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UPARC Raises an Antenna a Long Time Coming

“Ansel Adams” style tower shot [Photo by N4KIN]
Ever since moving to Clearwater, club member Tom NY4I has been looking to raise an HF beam at his house. Having used a multi-band off-center fed (OCF) dipole, getting to a beam was key. The plans were modest. No large tower was to be installed just yet (that’s a future project). The HF beam would reside on a Glen Martin 5 foot roof tower mounted on a flat roof covering Tom’s outdoor kitchen. Tom opted for a Mosley MP-33-NW 5 band Yagi-Uda (“Yagi”) antenna at a height of 22 feet.

This project took place over several months. First was the project to install the requisite VHF/UHF vertical along with the aforementioned OCF dipole. Then came the KF7P entrance panel box on the side of the house.

KF7P entrance panel with Morgan lightning arrestors mounted. [Photo by N4KIN]
Another day was to install the ground rods for the station ground and the single point ground for the antenna arrestors. A local handyman installed the roof tower into the roof structure of the flat roof.

Station ground through wall. [Photo by N4KIN]
Once the Mosley beam arrived (after a lead time of 3 months), the team gathered again to assemble the antenna elements. See this page for more details on that work party.

Getting closer, the next planned work party was to assemble the beam in the driveway and move it to the roof. That work party was Saturday September 30th. The team managed to get the antenna to sit on the flat roof.

Antenna elements to Boom Assembly by (l to r)Fred W2SUB, Alan W4UB and Rob WD4IFT. [Photo by AF4O]
[Photo by W2SUB]
A quick visit on the following Monday (10/2) installed the Alfa-Spid RAK rotator and the antenna onto the roof tower.

Beam and roof tower on the roof. [Photo by WD4IFT]
Alfa Spid rotator mounted in the roof tower. [Photo by W2SUB]
[Photo by W2SUB]
Jack N4KIN (left) and Ryan AF4O work on the thrust bearing. [Photo by W2SUB]
Tower mounted in roof tower. Note the pre-amps came off as that is another project. [Photo by W2SUB]
Then this past Thursday, the team came over and in two hours was able to get the antenna pushed up to the top of the mast attend to last minute weather proofing on the antenna and run the coax to go into the arrestor box. This was far enough along that Tom could put an end on the coax run into the ham shack and test out the antenna. The antenna is pointed at 290 degrees west to work the California QSO Party this weekend.

[Photo by KB4BOQ]
The team assembling the beam on the mast overlooking the golf course. [Photo by KB4BOQ]
Andrew N3VG (on ladder), Ryan AF4O (center), Alan W4UB (right),  Jack N4KIN (not facing camera) and Rob WD4IFT (left). [Photo by KB4BOQ]
[Photo by N4KIN]
[Photo by N4KIN]
[Photo by N4KIN]
[Photo by N4KIN]
[Photo by N4KIN]
[Photo by W2SUB]
[Photo by W2SUB]
The next part is to get the rotator cable installed so that may turn and mount a new lightning arrestor in the wall box. As with any project, there are always a bunch of things to handle inside like installing the DX Engineering 8×2 automatic antenna switch, Paradan antenna disconnect, get the Flex Radio setup up and running and get the remote operational. A ham’s shack is never done…

It must be said that this project could not have been accomplished with the tireless efforts of fellow UPARC members Ryan AF4O, Jack N4KIN, Fred W2SUB, Alan W4UB, Rob WD4IFT, Bob K1NLS, Olev KO4WUB, Dan KB4BOQ, Ron W4RFA and Andrew N3VG. Also a great big thank you to Beth Whidden (Tom’s wife), April Kinney, Denise Botero and Dee Streitman. Thank you to all for your help. It is greatly appreciated. This is yet another example of how radio clubs come together to help each other out.

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